About Lino

Lino is an artist, humorist, and occasional responsible adult. He is the co-founder of a challenge-based LEGO car club called LUGNuts that boasts over 1100 members worldwide. He proposed automotive building challenges every month for ten years (120 challenges!) where he and the other members built accordingly. LUGNuts has retired their challenges on their 10th anniversary but still remain a cornerstone for LEGO automotive builders. Between his artistic work and LEGO builds, Lino has been published in several books, including Beautiful LEGO, Beautiful LEGO: Dark and Beautiful LEGO: Wild. He lives in Lynnwood, Washington with his girlfriend Lorraine and his two dogs Lulu and Bella.

Posts by Lino

Ezekiel saw a wheel

A few years back I was taking measurements for a custom rug that was going to adorn my living room. It wasn’t a perfect rectangle as it needed an angled corner cut out to accommodate the fireplace. It occurred to me then, as I was trying to recall forgotten formulas, that I was using geometry and algebra outside of high school. They warned us to pay attention as we might need this someday. Unlike me, it seems Nathan Proudlove has a firm grasp on all the algebra and geometry the world has to offer as evidenced by this awe-inspiring space station. The inner rim of the hub boasts glass-enclosed habitat modules and green spaces. The spin of the wheel in space would create gravity, keeping the inhabitants within safe and comfortable.

Zooming in and taking a gander at some of the individual modules is the only way to really appreciate what a massive undertaking this must have been. Here is a particularly interesting shot that showcases the complex geometry that helped create the large round structure. Minifig legs in orange offers a clever bit of greebling.

Space Station

A shot of the central hub shows two smaller craft exiting the space station. Another wheel stacked behind this one would have made a near perfect replica of the space station from 2001: A Space Odyssey. I can just hear Hal’s pompous not-quite-human voice now; “I’m sorry, Lino. Your grasp of geometry and algebra is insufficient. You’ll never figure that rug out.” Can it, Hal!

Space Station

This is why Roswell can’t have nice things

Farmers don’t seem to be the type who like to be messed with, but that doesn’t stop aliens from messing with them pretty much since man has learned to plant green beans. Lokiloki29 builds a micro-scale scene depicting the classic battle between hapless farmers and the alien invaders who are hellbent on doing weird things to their livestock and crops. The gravel road beside the barn is a whole slew of these laid in sideways while the dismembered minifig hands cleverly depicts a cornfield. While small, the tractor is accurately created using just a few parts. I’m pretty sure I saw that exact model on the John Deere website. I’m not sure what this poor farmer did to deserve a close encounter of the probing kind. But to our new alien overlords, I like my beef tenderized and singed with just a touch of pink on the inside.

Alien invasion

The Infernal Dictionary has no word for this

Builder [VB] and his friends have built an entire royal family of odd creatures such as this King Asmodeus. The kicker is the only description they left for us is written in some crazy, arcane, completely indecipherable moon language. They state; “Aucun avant n’a songe de réunir un pandémonium d’aberrations et de porteurs de malheur sous une seule entité surnommée le Dictionnaire Infernal”.

King Asmodeus

I just wish there was some sort of online translator to make heads or tails of this muck. It would be like Googling something except, instead of looking up photos or articles, you could plug the indecipherable gibberish into one section and it would spit up a translation in English, or whatever your native language happens to be. But we’re probably like fifty years from having such technology, which is a shame really. Oh, well. Here’s a prior time the same builder totally delighted us with Uranus.

“The Kid” wins by a knockout!

Can you believe it, folks? Builder Vir-a-cocha has reason to do a few victory laps around the ring today as this boxing scene has us all talking like Howard Cosell. This pugilist (probably so called because they look like pugs once they’re done with each other) has his arm raised in victory. “The Kid” in the red trunks has won with a knockout in the 9th round up against “Hollywood” Tony Malone in the blue. He’ll be seeing stars for weeks for sure! Boxing history is made here at The Brothers Brick Square Garden! This wouldn’t be the first time Vir-a-cocha has dazzled us all, not by a long shot!

Knockout

One horseman of the apocalypse

Who needs the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse when you have this Kumamoto Castle Samurai, who can do more ass-kicking and raise more holy hell than four horseman combined. Or, at the very least, he would ruin your 日本の宴会. DanielBrickSon is a master of building with Bionicle and this is some amazing feat. To give some perspective to the massive scale of this, the flag is a sail from the 70618 Destiny’s Bounty set. The flag topper is a minifig-scale horse battle helmet. So just imagine your minifig horse wearing it next to this beast and you’ll get a feel for what it might be like to do battle with this awe-inspiring samurai. While masterful build techniques abound, the 2×4 plates facing studs-out along the base are an excellent touch. This would look to be right at home as a centerpiece sculpture in any Asian art museum.

Kumamoto Castle Samurai

Bring the future home with the Sky Rider Special

Scientists, writers, and other visionaries of the past imagined we’d all have flying cars and bikes by now. What happened? What they were expecting was a revolution of energy but what happened instead was a revolution of data. The result means that the average person carries far more computing power in their pocket than what it took to put men on the moon but we, as of yet, have no efficient or affordable means to fly to work on the daily. Still, a boy can dream and Vince Toulouse has such a dream with this Sky Rider Special. Dark blue and tan make for a handsome color combination while a ball socket acts as a terrific headlight encasing. The pièce de résistance however involves the use of two Bionicle airpumps in the engine area to emulate some brilliant hover-bike wizardry.

Sky Rider Special

Someday Vince’s vision may still come true but for now I’ll have to appease myself with entire libraries worth of data at my fingertips in order to watch dachshund videos on Youtube.

A Gotham City like no other

Imagine building a LEGO creation for the sole purpose of making stop-motion animation. That is precisely what TheBrickDen has done and the end result offers some surprising yet practical solutions. You are looking at his interpretation of Batman’s Gotham City, a fictional place that we all feel we know from comic books, TV shows, or hit movies. This Gotham City is, first off, more colorful than we usually imagine it and secondly is situated vertically in what the builder calls three separate districts; a dilapidated and seedy lower level, a bustling middle area and a sort of elite business district atop of it all. In this regard it is more akin to the 70620 Nijago City set than what we know of Gotham. If this were a sprawling layout, I would imagine it to be difficult to position a camera in the middle of it to do stop-motion photography work but in this configuration, dozens of passageways, cubicles and nooks are all easily accessible to the camera. Each new angle would offer a different vignette into the action taking place within.

Lego Gotham MOC

Click to discover more of Gotham City.

The Star Wars MTT brings the boys (and battle droids) to the yard

With stiff acting, boring political lectures and that abomination known as Jar Jar Binks, there was plenty wrong with the Star Wars prequels. Even as an adult I found myself glazing over when the senators and all the other grown-ups were talking about trade route tariff disputes but then perked up when there were explosions and laser battles. One thing that went well — in my opinion anyway, though yours may vary — is the films’ spaceship and vehicle design. I was not overly disappointed with the look and feel of everything and was in the camp that was impressed by the imposing Federation MTT (Multi Troop Transport). A builder by the name of Just Bricking seems to agree. Reminiscent of a charging bison, this creation expertly captures the complex angles of this unique design.

While the builder didn’t provide a video of this in action or even an interior photo, we’re told that this creation comprises 3,250 pieces and took two years to build. It is a massive 72 studs long, 32 high, and 22 wide. I can only imagine that this has a feature that would unfurl some complex rotisserie to deploy a battalion of battle droids into action like a hi-tech Trojan Horse.

This house flirts with Brutalism, but don’t we all?

There are several ways to relieve stress; meditation, good diet, adjusting your jazz intake from acid to smooth. Or you can take a gander at Sarah Beyer’s Artsand House and imagine yourself relaxing among the many verandas and green spaces. See, don’t you feel better already? Sarah tells us that to engage in this house is to flirt with Brutalism. (We’ve all been there, right?) All kidding aside, her meaning has nothing to do with batting eyelashes at someone who might be a toxic thug. Brutalism, in architectural terms, is a style of building that emerged in the 1950s and is characterized by imposing monolithic concrete slabs and rigid, often cold geometry. This style works effectively with courthouses, police stations, town halls, prisons, often big municipal buildings of importance but rarely do we state that Brutalism can describe a relaxing and lovely home. But in Sarah’s hands, this is the case.

Artsand House MOC. Front garden.

Click here to see more of the house.

Halloween Zombie Freak-Out 2019!

What are your Halloween plans? Mine are to buy a bag of candy for trick-or-treaters, stay in and watch a few schlock horror flicks, but leave the lights out in hopes trick-or-treaters won’t actually come so as to have all the delicious candy for myself. What? Don’t judge. I like schlock horror flicks. It would seem Pieter Dennison has some schlock Halloween plans of his own that involve surviving the inevitable zombie apocalypse. Shipping containers make great zombie deterrents (right up until they learn to climb) and a rickety ladder serves as optimum transport between the two of them. I can’t see how that can go badly. Cattails (nature’s corndogs) populate the center area while the power lines in the background are an excellent touch. If this layout was a movie, I’d totally watch it with a bag of candy. Trick-or-treaters be damned!

halloween 2019

All aboard for some hot steamy action

Two builders who go by the names of Brick Rebel and Monstrophonic have put their noggins and considerable skill together to build this exquisite Steampunk city layout called LEGO Steam Company. What is Steampunk exactly? It’s a sci-fi sub-genre that takes into account if H.G. Wells and Jules Verne were right about their Victorian-Era visions of the future. Zeppelins, steamboats, copper robots and steam-powered trains abound in this genre where everyone from an airship mechanic to the mayor look fantastic in a top hat and copper goggles. The builders tell us this layout features an array of moving elements including a steam power plant with tall chimney, the Steam Rail (moving train/monorail), skyscraper with functioning elevator, the Department of Dirigibles (with working revolving door and searchlight on the roof), a ‘flying’ zeppelin with whirling rotors and cabin lighting. There is also a city park with a botanical garden, a restaurant with robotic waiters and various other buildings and figures in Victorian Steampunk style.

Lego Steam Company - Steampunk layout 2019 - Main

Click here to go full steam ahead and discover more.

On a brisk Autumn night

Sometimes we build things that we’re just not that into. Kevin Peeters tells us he’s not entirely happy with this Burac Keep but we like it. Maybe it’s just the spirit of Halloween talking, maybe it’s the build techniques, the crumbling, haphazard bricks or maybe it’s because this is just the kind of thing you’d see in New England on a brisk Autumn night. Or maybe it’s because we know a good thing when we see it. But we like this; we like it a lot. Here’s another time we totally liked something Kevin did.

Burac Keep